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Global Tuberculosis Epidemic Levelling Off - WHO

HIV/AIDS is dramatically fuelling the TB epidemic, the WHO says. It sees collaboration between TB and HIV programmes as the key to reducing the burden of TB among people living with HIV/AIDS and HIV among TB patients. Again it sounds a pious hope.

For instance, the Report finds that HIV testing for TB patients is increasing rapidly in Africa, but few people living with HIV are being screened for TB. "In the last year, we have seen unprecedented collaboration between the TB and HIV communities, but much more is needed if we are to achieve our goal of universal access to quality TB and HIV prevention, diagnostic, treatment and care services", says Dr Peter Piot, Executive Director of UNAIDS.

The spread of the etensively drug resistant XDR-TB and the multi-drug resistant MDR-TB are among the other problems encountered by the international health administrators.

Dr Mario Raviglione, Director of the WHO Stop TB Department, claimed in a message that they had a clear plan for checking XDR-TB and MDR-TB. But paucity of funds was slowing down the process, threatening to reverse the gains made, he said and called for greater research to identify new diagnostics, drugs and vaccines.
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